Recent news from Digi-Capital showed that in the 1st quarter of 2016, investment in Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality grew to $1.1 billion ( compared to $700m total in 2015). As we’ve noted in the past, investment in Augmented Reality has been particularly slow in comparison to other technologies on the Gartner Hype Cycle. Initial investment for 2015 and 2016 seems to be titled towards Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality hardware, but as both AR and VR ecosystems grow, Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality software should see it’s own share of investment acceleration.
What is noticeable with this recent Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality investment trend, is the lack of traditional venture capital firms investing in either AR or VR ecosystems. With many “Uber for X” sharing economy startups and unicorns having their valuations written down, it seems like the appropriate time for venture capitalists to finally turn their attention to the AR and VR arena.
As most of us in the Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality field have known for awhile, AR and VR are the disruptive technologies for the next 20 years. And if you’re still not convinced, you can view these Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality market projections from Goldman Sachs ($80 Billion Market), Digi-Capital ($120 Billion Market) and ABI Research ($100 Billion Market). Our favorite prediction and money quote is from Goldman Sachs – “We continue to believe VR/AR is poised to be the next computing platform. And like the transition from desktop to mobile, it will be disruptive…The first half of 2016 will see the most significant progress on VR/AR ever.”